How To Wear: Grungy Plaid


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Recently Voucher Codes UK got in touch to see if I'd been interested in taking part in their How To Wear project. Always up for a challenge, I immediately started trawling through my favourite clothing websites to find some new clothes and accessories that fitted my brief. Voucher Codes sent over £80 and challenged me to find three items which fitted into one of this autumn's biggest trends, "grungy plaid", and create three different outfits to show you how you can update your wardrobe on a budget and make the latest fashion trends wearable for everyday life. I chose a Red Tartan Skater Skirt from New Look, a Tartan Skater Dress from ASOS and a pair of Double Buckle Strap Boots from New Look. Typically, all these items have gone into the sale since I ordered them, arrrgggh! But even at full price, they came in slightly under budget at £72.98.

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A classic red and plaid pattern screams "grunge" to me, rather than the more multi-coloured green/blue/yellow/purple tartans, so this skater skirt from New Look was top of my shopping list. The light cotton material and lack of pleats make it a nice casual skirt and avoid looking too much like a school uniform. I've paired it with a slouchy black top from H&M which I've had for years, and one of my most-worn necklaces which was actually from the men's section in River Island. For shoes, I've opted for a pair of black lace-up boots which I bought from Ebay last year. These are great in-betweeny shoes as the wedge makes them comfortable to walk in for the daytime but they still look a wee bit dressed up if you want to wear them at night. This outfit is perfect for wearing to the pub as it's comfy and casual but it still looks like you've made a bit of effort - not too much effort though eh, it is grrrrunge after all! Dress it up a bit with a sheer black shirt instead of a tshirt, or dress down with a pair of converse and a chunky cardigan.

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This second outfit is my take on grungy plaid for a night out, centred around this tartan skater dress from ASOS. The plaid pattern itself is actually quite bright and verging on being more preppy than grungy, so a dress like this would be great if you like the idea of the trend but aren't quite ready to fully embrace it yet. I've still kept some classic grungy elements in the outfit (plaid, leather jacket, chunky boots), but toned them down a bit and made them more dressy. The jacket is from French Connection* and is slightly more tailored than some leather jackets so is great for wearing on a night out. If you've been following my blog for a while then I'm sure you're sick to death of these shoes as I wear them all the time! They're comfy, the perfect height and they go with just about anything. The chunky heel and studs give them a bit of a grungy feel but they're still nice enough to go with the dress. This dress would also look great with a denim jacket and some ballet pumps for a more summery outfit.

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My final purchase just had to be a pair of big, stompy boots and these boots from New Look fit the bill perfectly. Between the months of September and April I live pretty much constantly in boots like these, so I had no trouble coming up with an outfit to pair them with. I opted for a checked flannel shirt from River Island which I bought around this time last year. I couldn't do a post about grungy fashion trends without mentioning a plaid shirt now, could I?! This outfit is perfect for a lazy weekend; a slouchy shirt, a pair of leggings and some comfy boots is pretty much the easiest outfit ever (and one of my staples for the winter months). You could wear the shirt open (or tied at the waist) on top of a black bodycon dress for a dressier option, or button all the way up and chuck a fine knit jumper over the top for an even cosier rainy day outfit.

I hope that gave you a bit of inspiration for how to embrace the grungy plaid trend without A) spending a small fortune, B) chucking out all your old clothes, and C) looking like you're actually in fancy dress. Which is your favourite outfit?

Will you be embracing the grungy plaid trend this autumn/winter?

Gillian x


  1. You look gorgeous in the Asos dress - it's my favourite!

  2. That skirt is absolutely lovely! I am in love with tartan/plaid stuff right now. Picked up an awesome pair of shorts from Primark in my last post.

  3. I love the grungy look too, right into anything tartan at the moment. I remember wearing this style about 15 years ago and everyone thought I was weird... clearly ahead of the game... ahem...xx

  4. Love all the items you've picked! Especially the tartan skirt and the ASOS dress - really pretty as well as being grungy and not too 'pretty pretty' x

  5. The last one is my fav :) I love a good shirt paired with some black bottoms - nothing says autumn chic more :D


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